Pollution / Elisa del Taglia & Sara Sassi

At the edge of chaos

An online exhibition curated by the Arts Management Master Course of IED – Istituto Europeo di Design di Firenze,

in collaboration with Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi and Manifattura Tabacchi



Elisa del Taglia & Sara Sassi

The project is based on “Paterno”, a place situated near Florence exactly between Sesto Fiorentino and Barberino. Ten years ago, a quarry was built near the houses of the inhabitants. The quarry produced a lot of lime mixed with toxic materials like heavy metals (Nickel, Chrome, Amiantus etc.) from 1990 to 2000. This produced toxic air for the people who lived there, toxic water that was used in their houses and toxic products in their fields. Everything was contaminated. Today, a part of the toxic powder has been removed but most of the powder remains near the factory and in the quarry. There are only 31 inhabitants of Paterno, lots of them have been sick and others decided to leave the place because of the pollution.
Our project is inspired by the problematic situation of Paterno. We think the best way to express our idea is through performance art because we want to communicate clearly to the public about the concept of the Anthropocene. In this way the project is connected to Tomas Saraceno’s exhibition.

There are two performers that want to free nature from the heavy metal and toxic substances; they wear masks, gloves and white coveralls to be safe from the real toxic waste of Paterno. In this case they are using burnt ashes instead of the real toxic materials. The time of the performance is an important part because it is based on our physical endurance, so everything is conditioned by that. There isn’t a definitive time. It makes every moment of the performance unique and unrepeatable.

The performance took place live on Monday 22nd of June from a location near Paterno and it was live streamed over the instagram of the exhibition.

Sara Sassi

Sara Sassi is attending the last year of the course in Visual Arts and New Expressive Languages ​​at the Accademia di Belle Arti in Florence. She began her artistic career by dealing with issues related to the female dimension examined from a personal point of view; today she has shifted her focus to social and environmental issues. She works with multiple expressive languages ​​including photography, video and installations.

Elisa del Taglia

Elisa Del Taglia is finishing her studies at the Accademia di Belle Arti in Florence. Her artistic research finds its dimension within photography, performance and video. The topics she deals with are inspired by her studies in the psychological and anthropological fields; they are inserted within the artistic context, bringing to light food for thought coming from her personal experience and studies.